Comparison of image registration based measures of regional lung ventilation from dynamic spiral CT with Xe-CT

Kai Ding, Kunlin Cao, Matthew K. Fuld, Kaifang Du, Gary E. Christensen, Eric A. Hoffman, Joseph M. Reinhardt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Purpose: Regional lung volume change as a function of lung inflation serves as an index of parenchymal and airway status as well as an index of regional ventilation and can be used to detect pathologic changes over time. In this paper, the authors propose a new regional measure of lung mechanics-the specific air volume change by corrected Jacobian. The authors compare this new measure, along with two existing registration based measures of lung ventilation, to a regional ventilation measurement derived from xenon-CT (Xe-CT) imaging. Methods: 4DCT and Xe-CT datasets from four adult sheep are used in this study. Nonlinear, 3D image registration is applied to register an image acquired near end inspiration to an image acquired near end expiration. Approximately 200 annotated anatomical points are used as landmarks to evaluate registration accuracy. Three different registration based measures of regional lung mechanics are derived and compared: the specific air volume change calculated from the Jacobian (SAJ); the specific air volume change calculated by the corrected Jacobian (SACJ); and the specific air volume change by intensity change (SAI). The authors show that the commonly used SAI measure can be derived from the direct SAJ measure by using the air-tissue mixture model and assuming there is no tissue volume change between the end inspiration and end expiration datasets. All three ventilation measures are evaluated by comparing to Xe-CT estimates of regional ventilation. Results: After registration, the mean registration error is on the order of 1 mm. For cubical regions of interest (ROIs) in cubes with size 20 mm × 20 mm × 20 mm, the SAJ and SACJ measures show significantly higher correlation (linear regression, average r2 0.75 and r2 0.82) with the Xe-CT based measure of specific ventilation (sV) than the SAI measure. For ROIs in slabs along the ventral-dorsal vertical direction with size of 150 mm × 8 mm × 40 mm, the SAJ, SACJ, and SAI all show high correlation (linear regression, average r2 0.88, r2 0.92, and r2 0.87) with the Xe-CT based sV without significant differences when comparing between the three methods. The authors demonstrate a linear relationship between the difference of specific air volume change and difference of tissue volume in all four animals (linear regression, average r2 0.86). Conclusions: Given a deformation field by an image registration algorithm, significant differences between the SAJ, SACJ, and SAI measures were found at a regional level compared to the Xe-CT sV in four sheep that were studied. The SACJ introduced here, provides better correlations with Xe-CT based sV than the SAJ and SAI measures, thus providing an improved surrogate for regional ventilation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5084-5098
Number of pages15
JournalMedical physics
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • image registration
  • lung function
  • pulmonary
  • tissue function
  • ventilation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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